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Effect of dietary fats with odd or even numbers of carbon atoms on metabolic response and muscle damage with exercise in Quarter Horse–type horses with type 1 polysaccharide storage myopathy

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  • 1 Veterinary Population Medicine Department, College of Veterinary Medicine, University of Minnesota, Saint Paul, MN 55108.
  • | 2 Veterinary Population Medicine Department, College of Veterinary Medicine, University of Minnesota, Saint Paul, MN 55108.
  • | 3 Veterinary Population Medicine Department, College of Veterinary Medicine, University of Minnesota, Saint Paul, MN 55108.
  • | 4 Kentucky Equine Research Inc, 3910 Delaney Ferry Rd, Versailles, KY 40383.
  • | 5 Institute of Metabolic Disease, Baylor University Medical Center, 3812 Elm St, Dallas, TX 75226.

Abstract

Objective—To evaluate effects of fats with odd and even numbers of carbon atoms on muscle metabolism in exercising horses with polysaccharide storage myopathy (PSSM).

Animals—8 horses with PSSM (6 females and 2 males; mean ± SD age, 6.3 ± 3.9 years).

Procedures—Isocaloric diets (grain, triheptanoin, corn oil, and high-fat, low-starch [HFLS] feed) were fed for 3 weeks each; horses performed daily treadmill exercise. Grain was fed to establish an exercise target, and HFLS feed was fed as a negative control diet. Daily plasma samples were obtained. For each diet, a 15-minute exercise test was performed, and gluteus medius muscle specimens and blood samples were obtained before and after exercise.

Results—Feeding triheptanoin, compared with the corn oil diet, resulted in exercise intolerance; higher plasma creatine kinase (CK) activity and concentrations of C3:0- and C7:0-acylcarnitine and insulin; and lower concentrations of nonesterified fatty acids (NEFA) and C16:0-, C18:1-, and C18:2-acylcarnitine, without changes in concentrations of plasma glucose or resting muscle substrates and metabolites. Feeding grain induced higher CK activity and insulin concentrations and lower NEFA concentrations than did corn oil or HFLS feed. Feeding grain induced higher glucose concentrations than did triheptanoin and corn oil. In muscle, feeding grain resulted in lower glucose-6-phosphate, higher citrate, and higher postexercise lactate concentrations than did the other diets.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Triheptanoin had detrimental effects, reflecting decreased availability of NEFA, increased insulin stimulation of glycogen synthesis, and potential inhibition of lipid oxidation. Long-chain fats are the best dietetic for PSSM.

Abstract

Objective—To evaluate effects of fats with odd and even numbers of carbon atoms on muscle metabolism in exercising horses with polysaccharide storage myopathy (PSSM).

Animals—8 horses with PSSM (6 females and 2 males; mean ± SD age, 6.3 ± 3.9 years).

Procedures—Isocaloric diets (grain, triheptanoin, corn oil, and high-fat, low-starch [HFLS] feed) were fed for 3 weeks each; horses performed daily treadmill exercise. Grain was fed to establish an exercise target, and HFLS feed was fed as a negative control diet. Daily plasma samples were obtained. For each diet, a 15-minute exercise test was performed, and gluteus medius muscle specimens and blood samples were obtained before and after exercise.

Results—Feeding triheptanoin, compared with the corn oil diet, resulted in exercise intolerance; higher plasma creatine kinase (CK) activity and concentrations of C3:0- and C7:0-acylcarnitine and insulin; and lower concentrations of nonesterified fatty acids (NEFA) and C16:0-, C18:1-, and C18:2-acylcarnitine, without changes in concentrations of plasma glucose or resting muscle substrates and metabolites. Feeding grain induced higher CK activity and insulin concentrations and lower NEFA concentrations than did corn oil or HFLS feed. Feeding grain induced higher glucose concentrations than did triheptanoin and corn oil. In muscle, feeding grain resulted in lower glucose-6-phosphate, higher citrate, and higher postexercise lactate concentrations than did the other diets.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Triheptanoin had detrimental effects, reflecting decreased availability of NEFA, increased insulin stimulation of glycogen synthesis, and potential inhibition of lipid oxidation. Long-chain fats are the best dietetic for PSSM.

Contributor Notes

Supported by the Morris Animal Foundation, Clinical and Translational Research Summer Fellowship, Gregory Marzolf Muscular Dystrophy Training Award, and University of Minnesota Equine Center with funds provided by the Minnesota Racing Commission and Minnesota Agricultural Experiment Station.

Presented in part at the American College of Veterinary Internal Medicine Forum, Seattle, June 2007.

The authors thank Michelle Lucio, April Holden, Krista Steffenhagen, and Alex Bianco for assistance.

Address correspondence to Dr. Borgia (borgi003@umn.edu).